Recent Harper cartoon quips uncalled for

As the former Editor of the Calgary Sun for many years in all modesty — at least what modesty I have!

Dear Editor,

As the former Editor of the Calgary Sun for many years in all modesty — at least what modesty I have! — I think I know a bit about good newspapers. I read the Sylvan Lake News each week from the first page to the last page and it surely does cover the events, issues and personalities in our community extremely well. It is a credit to our town.

But just two good-natured quibbles:

Your cartoonist repeatedly mocks in savage and vicious fashion Prime Minister Stephen Harper. One caption this past week described Harper as a “clueless” individual running our country.

Harper is an Albertan and one never mocks the local boy who made good. Alberta has produced just three prime ministers: R.B. Bennett, who served just one term in the 1930s before being defeated; Joe Clark, who lasted just a handful or so of months before being defeated, and Harper who has won three straight elections — a rare occurrence in Canada. I am surprised that no one in authority at the Sylvan Lake News has called a halt to this cartoonist’s diatribes and found placement who can, at least, mock our politicians in an amusing manner.

My second quibble regards the column “It’s time to include dental care in the healthcare system,” (Sept. 26). The reason no federal or provincial government has taken this step is because already healthcare budgets are the biggest single expenditure decade after decade. They are, of course, necessary expenditures. To add dental care would add another enormous expense that taxpayers would have to foot.

Then I looked at the author of this to find he is the Dean in the Faculty of Dentistry at McGill University in Montreal. Obviously he has a blatant conflict of interest here, basically shilling for the nation’s dentists. To add to that, he is from Quebec, a province with an horrendous provincial debt. Surely, it would have been possible to at least get the views of the Dean of Dentistry at a university in Alberta to make this case.

These quibbles made, I surely look forward to the Sylvan Lake News again each week.

Paul Conrad Jackson,

Sylvan Lake